Movies

Why Kannada actor Sidhaartha believes in living his on-screen characters

Though he has acted in 22 films till date, the young actor often rides the metro as a test. “No one recognises me."

Sidhaartha Maadhyamika is unrecognisable in real life. He has donned a new look for every role he has depicted on screen with so much conviction, that when he stands in front of you as himself , it takes you a few seconds to recognise him. “That is a positive result for me,” laughs the young actor who adds, “People should see me as the character I am portraying, and not as myself. The day they see me as Sidhaartha on screen, I believe I have failed.”

Why Kannada actor Sidhaartha believes in living his on-screen characters

Though he has acted in 22 films till date, the young actor often rides the metro as a test. “No one recognises me. That shows I have been successful in being seen as the character I portray on screen,” says the actor, who put on 15 kilos for his role in Hemanth Rao’s Kavaludaari. Sidhaartha also looks totally different in Adarsh Eashwarappa’s ongoing Bhinna compared to what he did as a cop in the director’s Shuddhi -- right from his hairstyle, to his look and his mannerisms.

Why Kannada actor Sidhaartha believes in living his on-screen characters

“Not being recognised off screen is a gift. When I play a particular character, the onus is on me to present that person and his mannerisms to you as realistically as possible,” says Sidhaartha, who comes from a family of actors. “My parents, grandparents and great grandparents have worked in theatre. They have been associated with Gubbi and Subbaihah Naidu’s theatre companies for years. The talk at home was only about acting and about characters. Being the only child, I was expected to study well and find a job,” recalls Sidhaartha, who then completed his diploma to become a dental technician and “never thought of becoming an actor. It was only when I started working as a dental technician, I realised that even this field was one of struggle. I was not being paid well by dentists for my work and was feeling dejected. One day, impulsively, I quit my job and decided to become an actor. My parents were shocked as they were still struggling as actors even after years of work. I was adamant,” reveals Sidhaartha, who then took off to Ninasam in 2007. “Unfortunately, the batch I decided to join had already started, so I joined a travelling children’s theatre repertory -- Kinnara Mela -- in Heggodu instead. The first thing that touched me was the way they thought and interpreted ideas on stage. Theatre taught me to read books and stories, changed my perception and outlook towards life and also changed my personality. I was sloppy, even that changed due to theatre,” shares Sidhaartha, who later did finally manage to train himself at Ninasam.

Why Kannada actor Sidhaartha believes in living his on-screen characters

Apart from developing his character, Sidhaartha also likes to narrate his dialogues with intensity. “While working on a play, a director told me I have to feel the emotions when I say my dialogues. While playing one particular character, I had to feel like a fish out of water. So I fell into a puddle of rain water in Heggodu to feel like a fish and practised my dialogues, in the puddle!,” laughs the man, adding that his friends still tease him about that incident.

After his years of experience in theatre, he says he has just “touched the tip of the iceberg in theatre, which also taught me that questions will arise, but we have to seek answers through our experiences,” adds the actor, who then started auditioning for films and bagged his first role as a lead with Saligrama, which will hit the screen in October.

Why Kannada actor Sidhaartha believes in living his on-screen characters

“It is my first commercial film, complete with romance, pathos and songs,” says Sidhaartha, who has mostly acted in offbeat films. He is also part of the soon-to-release thriller 96, directed by Jayanth Seege with Sheetal Shetty playing the lead. His role in Shuddhi paved way for a role in Hemanth Rao’s Kavaludaari, “where I play a 70s character,” explains the actor, who believes in realistic acting. “This is different from realistic behaviour. You have to live and act like the character and not behave like that; behaving becomes artificial,” explains the man who has also completed work for Bhinna and is awaiting the release of his new films.

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Printable version | Jun 5, 2020 4:23:25 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/movies/the-realistic-actor/article25036076.ece

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